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BORN DIFFICULT? MICHELLE LIGHT Director, UNLV Libraries Special Collections (formerly Head of Special Collections, Archives, and Digital Scholarship at.

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Presentation on theme: "BORN DIFFICULT? MICHELLE LIGHT Director, UNLV Libraries Special Collections (formerly Head of Special Collections, Archives, and Digital Scholarship at."— Presentation transcript:

1 BORN DIFFICULT? MICHELLE LIGHT Director, UNLV Libraries Special Collections (formerly Head of Special Collections, Archives, and Digital Scholarship at UC Irvine) This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported License.

2 OUTLINE ARL Spec Kit 329 on Managing Born Digital Special Collections and Archival Material A tale of two projects Access and delivery challenges Processing challenges Staffing lessons

3 Richard Rorty Papers Collection 78 floppy disks; ~1,100 unique files All word processing files All files authored by Rorty Gift agreement Copyright retained by widow Staffing Archivist assisted by IT staff member Appraisal Automated deduplication, item-level review Arrangement Files sorted individually into series Description Item-level description Preservation PDF/A migration; Merritt repository Access Virtual reading room in Dspace (i.e., remote access for registered users) All files searchable in Dspace Description harvested by Worldcat

4 Mark Poster papers Collection 1 hard drive; 221 directories; ~3,500 files Word processing files, databases, spreadsheets, html pages, s, images, videos, published articles Mix of authors and publishers Gift agreement Creative Commons License Staffing Archivist, IT staff, cataloger, subject librarian Appraisal Retained most noncorrupt files Arrangement Original structure retained Description Item and sub-series level description Preservation PDF/A migration; some files left as-is; Merritt repository Access Open access & virtual reading room in Dspace Partially searchable in Dspace Description harvested by Worldcat

5 ACCESS AND DELIVERY CHALLENGES ARL SPEC Kit 329: Managing Born-Digital Special Collections and Archival Materials (August 2012) noted that: 50% identified sensitivity of materials as the biggest access and delivery challenge 44% identified the lack of IT infrastructure to provide access

6 UCI’S VIRTUAL READING ROOM Concerns: copyright, privacy, FERPA, access, risk reduction Richard Rorty’s gift agreement: Widow retained copyrights, including exclusive publishing rights “Material may be made available for research without restriction according to the established procedures of the UCI Libraries.” Nature of Rorty born-digital files: All files authored by Rorty Many, many letters of recommendation

7 UCI’S VIRTUAL READING ROOM “Access to Rorty's born digital files is provided through the Libraries. Researchers must submit an application to use the collection and agree to follow the Rules of Use for the Virtual Reading Room. Access may be granted in less than 5 business days.”submit an applicationRules of Use for the Virtual Reading Room

8 UCI’S VIRTUAL READING ROOM

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11 Concerns: copyright, privacy, FERPA, access, risk reduction Richard Rorty’s gift agreement: Widow retained copyrights, including exclusive publishing rights “Material may be made available for research without restriction according to the established procedures of the UCI Libraries.” Nature of Rorty born-digital files: All files authored by Rorty Many, many letters of recommendation

12 UCI’S VIRTUAL READING ROOM Mark Poster’s gift agreement: Included a Creative Commons License Mark Poster’s files: with multiple authors Research files collected from multiple authors and publishers Book chapters authored by Poster Word processed documents, web pages, pdfs, database files, spreadsheets, s, audio and video files

13 COPYRIGHT Section 108 Published works (a) ….it is not an infringement of copyright for a library or archives…to reproduce no more than one copy or phonorecord of a work…if— (1) the reproduction or distribution is made without any purpose of direct or indirect commercial advantage; (2) the collections of the library or archives are (i) open to the public, or …; and (3) the reproduction or distribution of the work includes a notice of copyright …or includes a legend stating that the work may be protected by copyright... Unpublished works (b) The rights of reproduction and distribution … apply to three copies or phonorecords of an unpublished work duplicated solely for purposes of preservation and security or for deposit for research use in another library or archives … if— (1) the copy or phonorecord reproduced is currently in the collections of the library or archives; and (2) any such copy or phonorecord that is reproduced in digital format is not otherwise distributed in that format and is not made available to the public in that format outside the premises of the library or archives.

14 COPYRIGHT Code of Best Practices in Fair Use for Academic and Research Libraries (Association of Research Libraries, 2012) “It is fair use to create digital versions of a library’s special collections and archives and to make these versions electronically accessible in appropriate contexts.” “Presenting these unique collections as a digital aggregate, especially with commentary, criticism, and other curation, can be highly transformative.” “Providing access to published works that are available in unused copies on the commercial market at reasonable prices should be undertaken only with careful consideration, if at all.” “Libraries should consider taking technological steps… to prevent downloading of digital files by users, or else to limit the quality of files...” “…a special collection should be digitized in its entirety, and presented as a cohesive collection whenever possible.”

15 PROCESSING “Many respondents stated a need to further develop policies, processes, and tools for arranging and describing born digital materials in ways that make them the most accessible.” -ARL SPEC Kit 329: Managing Born-Digital Special Collections and Archival Materials (2012) “…good processing is done with a shovel, not with tweezers.” -Mark A. Greene and Dennis Meissner, “More Product, Less Process: Revamping Traditional Archival Processing.” American Archivist (2005)

16 APPRAISAL, ARRANGEMENT &DESCRIPTION Richard Rorty papers Automated inventory of files’ properties Automated deduplication Item-level description (i.e., providing titles) by archivist Item-level sorting into series Item-level restriction review Indexed and fully searchable within repository Mark Poster papers Automated inventory of files’ properties Failed attempt at automating titles Item-level description started, then abandoned for sub-series level Item-level appraisal started, then abandoned Arrangement reflects original order Partially searchable within repository, partially searchable after download

17 ITEM-LEVEL DESCRIPTION

18 SERIES LEVEL DESCRIPTION

19 SERIES-LEVEL DESCRIPTION

20 PROCESSING & ACCESS How do we process collections to maximize access and minimize staffing costs? How do we move away from item-level work? At what cost and risk? What theories, practices, or tools need to be developed? What does effective access to born-digital archival collections look like? What kinds of architecture, interfaces, and searching capabilities would best serve archival collections?

21 STAFFING & COLLABORATIONS ARL SPEC Kit 329: Managing Born-Digital Special Collections and Archival Materials “libraries continue to experiment with organizational models to find those that will be most effective to manage born-digital, primary-source materials” “frequently staff from special collections, library IT, digital repositories, digital curation, and other areas work together to ingest, appraise, describe, preserve, and provide access to this content”

22 STAFFING & COLLABORATIONS Richard Rorty papers ( – a 6 month project): Planning: Dept. Head (an archivist) Processing: Archivist assisted by Library IT staff Preservation & delivery: Library IT, Library Web Services, Campus IT, California Digital Library Mark Poster papers ( – a 2.5 year project): Planning: Dept. Head (an archivist), Library IT staff (a new digital archivist) Processing: Subject librarian, metadata librarian, Library IT staff, archivist (at end) Preservation & delivery: Library IT, Library Web Services, Campus IT, California Digital Library


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